No Boasting or Bragging; No Strutting or Preening

from Lynda LIndsey

None is righteous, no, not one; no one understands; no one seeks for God. All have turned aside; together they have become worthless; no one does good, not even one. Romans 3:11-12 ———— For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified by His grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God put forward as a propitiation by His blood, to be received by faith. Romans 3:23-25(a)

Have they no knowledge, all the evildoers who eat up my people as they eat bread and do not call upon the Lord? … O, that salvation for Israel would come out of Zion! When the Lord restores the fortunes of His people, let Jacob rejoice, let Israel be glad. Psalm 14:4; 7

Transgression speaks to the wicked deep in his heart, there is no fear of God before his eyes. For he flatters himself in his own eyes that his iniquity cannot be found out and hated. The words of his mouth are trouble and deceit…  Psalm 36:1-3(a)

A sorrowful state. All have sinned; there is none righteous, no not one. No one knows God, no one seeks after God. All have turned aside. Wicked deeds spring up out of wicked hearts, from internal to external, from thoughts and words to actions. Sin progresses from our inner depths and spills wickedness into our society. Evil progresses from evil. All this because we have no fear of God before our eyes. We boast and brag, we strut and preen, we flatter ourselves that we are a law unto our own, that we can flout God and live as we please. Who will know or even care?

Why does it matter? Because sin, a universal problem, affects us all. Without God, we have no inner peace, no shalom and our rebellion sets us at war with God, ourselves and others. Our speech reflects the strife and bitterness within our heart. We speak evil lies with deceptive tongues, with mouths full of cursing and bitterness. This inner warfare then spills over into society; we are quick to fight and quarrel, to shed blood, to murder. We go down paths of disorder, misery, and confusion. On an endless treadmill, we repeat what we know, over and over again. 

But God made a way to arrest this endless cycle, a way for us to be in right standing before Him. This way is not achieved by anything we do; it rests solely on what Jesus did. It’s not reforming ourselves, making new resolutions, having better intentions, keeping a code of law. We have right standing with God by faith when we trust in Jesus’s shed blood. God’s grace alone. Jesus alone. Faith alone. No boasting, bragging; no strutting or preening. Lay it all down at the cross. Repent. Turn to God. Salvation has come out of Zion! Rejoice and be glad! To God’s glory alone!